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10 The PCB Design Magazine • December 2017 Andy Shaughnessy is managing editor of The PCB Design Magazine. He has been covering PCB design for 18 years. He can be reached by clicking here. I'd never attended productronica, and it was something else. It must have been four times bigger than IPC APEX EXPO. Not quite as big as NAMM or a consumer show like CES, but it's one gigantic show, and spread out in sepa- rate halls. We did a lot of walking; the health app on my phone figured out that I walked 30,000 steps in one day. The Messe München venue has a room full of lockers, so you don't have to carry a winter coat around with you at a trade show. I have never seen so much food at a trade show. Some companies had whole kitchens in their booths, cranking out lasagna, waffles, gi- ant pretzels, and beer. Lots and lots of beer. I witnessed quite a few 10 a.m. booth meetings with every participant drinking a pilsner. That's just how it is in Germany. They really like beer. The great thing about attending produc- tronica was meeting the people from a compa- ny's European office, the ones who don't always come to shows in the U.S. Automotive was the biggest driver (pardon the pun) for most of the technologists I interviewed at productronica. Wireless was a close second. Every attendee and exhibitor I spoke with was bullish on our indus- try. Many companies were hiring, or planning to hire soon. One laminate rep said, "It's a great time to be in our industry." Now, December is here, and much of the East Coast is under a blanket of snow. So, to take the chill off, we're going to turn up the heat with December's thermal management issue. First, we have an interview with Dr. Johannes Adam of Adam Research, a thermal expert who took the train in to meet with me during pro- ductronica. He discusses his TRM software, the books he's writing, and the need for electrical engineers to have a better understanding of thermal issues. Next, Douglas G. Brooks discusses his col- laboration with the same Dr. Adam on the book PCB Trace and Via Temperatures: The Complete Analysis, as well as some surprising findings, and why temperature charts based on a trace in isolation are inaccurate. Then, John Parry of Mentor explains how mechanical engineers and engineers, working together early in the process, can streamline thermal design time. Ventec COO Mark Goodwin weighs in with a look at some new materials that feature a ther- mal capacity, and the effect of the automotive market on laminate development. And Anaya Vardya of American Standard Circuits discusses some of the choices facing PCB designers using insulated metal PCBs. We also have a column by Barry Olney on signal flight time variance in multilayer PCBs, and a review of the SIITME de- sign show in Romania, courtesy of Joe Fjelstad. It's almost the new year, and DesignCon and IPC APEX EXPO are not far behind. We'll be covering both shows, so if you can't make, we have you covered. Have a great holiday and Happy New Year! PCBDESIGN REPORTING FROM GERMANY Andy Shaughnessy and Patty Goldman explore Munich during productronica 2017.

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